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Archive for the ‘Announcements’ Category

NLM Request for Comments: Discontinuation of Artificial Subject Strings for Cataloging Records

NLM has been recording geographic locations and publications types in the MARC21 fields 651 and 655 respectively since 1999 to match indexing practices in subject assignment. This differs from LC’s practice of putting geographic locations in 650 $z and publication types in 650 $v. In 1999, 80% of medical libraries responding to the announcement of this practice being adopted at NLM, indicated that subjects in this format would be difficult to incorporate in their OPAC. NLM therefore continued to provide a specially programmed output with a traditional subject string of 650 $a $x $z $v for subscribers to Catfile. In 2005, NLM once again surveyed the community and proposed discontinuing the special programming to create traditional subject strings and to distribute records as they appear in LocatorPlus. At that time, a small majority of libraries were in favor of such a proposal; however, those who were opposed were very passionate about the issue and made some compelling arguments for keeping the strings. NLM made some minor changes to the record distribution programs at that time to ease some of the complexities its catalogers had been encountering in trying to code subjects for proper output, but continued to output traditional subject strings.

NLM now believes that the environment has changed enough to once again propose discontinuing the practice of creating artificial subject strings for subscribers to Catfile. Rather than traditional OPACs, many libraries are using discovery systems that search across different input streams and provide faceted searching options, and the library community is planning to make much more use of linked data, particularly with the future adoption of BIBFRAME. Long subject strings do not work well in a linked data environment, and many libraries are breaking up the traditional LCSH subject string into its component parts using the FAST vocabulary. MeSH has recently been released in RDF triples that correspond to data in 650 $a and $x, 651 or 655 fields. NLM believes the time is now appropriate to stop creating artificial subject strings and distribute NLM records exactly as they appear in the LocatorPlus database, which would mean that libraries that take copy from both NLM and OCLC would not have to edit one form or another to have consistency in their catalogs.

NLM is asking the medical library community for comments regarding what the effect would be on your institution if NLM were to discontinue distributing its MARC cataloging bibliographic records with artificially reconstructed subject strings. Records in MARC format would continue to have MeSH headings combined with the appropriate topical subheadings (650 $a $x), but geographic locations, and publication types would be carried in separate fields in the record, rather than as subfields of the MeSH heading. This would mean that records distributed to bibliographic utilities and other licensees would be identical to the records in LocatorPlus.

Please send your comments by August 31, 2015 to Diane Boehr, Head, Cataloging and Metadata Management Section at NLM. NLM will announce the final decision on whether or not to implement this change by September 30, 2015. Any changes to distribution files will not occur until calendar year 2016.

Example of current practice:

In NLM database:
650 22 $a Cross Cultural Comparison
650 22  $a Health Policy

Subject strings created for distribution:
650 22 $a Cross Cultural Comparison $z Africa $v Congresses
650 22 $a Health Policy $z Caribbean Region $v Congresses

Former NLM Director Donald Lindberg Receives Two Prominent Uniformed Services Medical Awards

Donald A.B. Lindberg, MD, who retired as National Library of Medicine Director on March 31, after more than 30 years of service, has been recognized by the United States uniformed services with two prestigious medical honors. On May 16, Dr. Lindberg was presented with an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters degree during the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences 36th commencement exercise at the Daughters of the American Revolution Constitution Hall in Washington, DC. The honorary degree recognizes Dr. Lindberg’s outstanding leadership in bioinformatics and his decades of public service. In conferring the honor, Charles L. Rice, MD, President of the Uniformed Services University, spoke resoundingly of Dr. Lindberg’s tireless work to empower and inform the ordinary citizen, patient, and caregiver.

At a March 30, 2015, National Institutes of Health program saluting his distinguished career as National Library of Medicine Director, Dr. Lindberg was awarded the US Army Order of Military Medical Merit. Colonel Cathy Nace, MD, Director of Medical Education for the Army, made the presentation. The US Army Order of Military Medical Merit, also known at O2M3, is an Army-based but separate organization established to recognize excellence and promote fellowship and esprit de corps among Army Medical Department personnel. Before reading the official award citation, Col. Nace thanked Dr. Lindberg on behalf of the entire Army for his many achievements, noting that this award is rarely bestowed upon civilians. She highlighted Dr. Lindberg’s pioneering work at NLM in support of the Army Medical Department and the resulting improvements to “the education and clinical practices of health care providers, Army military health systems and caregivers worldwide, and the care of the American warrior.” Col. Nace also noted that Dr. Lindberg was only the second civilian director of the Library, which traces its lineage to the Library of the Surgeon General of the Army, founded in 1836. NLM remained part of the military until 1956, when Congress officially designated it the National Library of Medicine and transferred it to the National Institutes of Health.

New ACRL Publication for Teaching Information Literacy

ACRL has just announced the new publication Teaching Information Literacy Threshold Concepts: Lesson Plans for Librarians, edited by Patricia Bravender, Hazel McClure, and Gayle Schaub. The book’s collection of lesson plans is designed by instruction librarians to promote critical thinking and engaged learning. It provides teaching librarians detailed, ready-to-use, and easily adaptable ideas to help students understand and be transformed by information literacy threshold concepts. The lessons in the book, created by teaching librarians across the country, are categorized according to the six information literacy frames identified in the ACRL Framework for Information Literacy in Higher Education (2015). This volume offers concrete and specific ways of teaching the threshold concepts that are central to the ACRL Framework and is suitable for all types of academic libraries and high school libraries, as well as a pedagogical tool for library and information schools.

Third Annual Science Boot Camp for Librarians in the West hosted at Stanford University, July 27-29 2015

The Third Annual Science Boot Camp for Librarians in the West will be hosted at Stanford University July 27-29, 2015. Information and registration link is available at the website. The registration deadline is July 10, 2015.

This 2.5-day event builds on previous Science Boot Camps held at the University of Colorado, Boulder in 2013, and at the University of Washington, Seattle, in 2014. These events feature workshops and educational presentations delivered by scientists with time for discussion and information sharing among all the participants. Most of the attendees are librarians involved in supporting research in the sciences, engineering, medicine or technology although anybody with an interest in science research is welcome.

SBCW 2015 at Stanford will include researchers from: Gladstone Institutes in San Francisco, ChEM-H Stanford’s lab for Chemistry, Engineering & Medicine for Human Health, Water in the West Institute at Stanford, and NSF Engineering Research Center for Re-inventing the Nation’s Urban Water Infrastructure (ReNUWIt). There will also be special project topics on Software and Data Carpentry with Physics and BioPhysics faculty and Tracey Teal from Software Carpentry.

2015 HIV/AIDS Community Information Outreach Projects Solicitation Released!

The National Library of Medicine (NLM) has announced the solicitation of proposals for the 2015 HIV/AIDS Community Information Outreach Projects, from organizations and libraries to design and conduct projects that will improve access to HIV/AIDS related health information for patients, the affected community, and their caregivers. Awards are offered for up to $50,000. Quotations are due to NLM by July 20, 2015!

The solicitation for the 2015 HIV/AIDS Community Information Outreach Projects is posted on the Federal Business Opportunities Web site. The Federal Business Opportunities Web site will also list all notices, updates, and modifications to the Solicitation.

Projects must involve one or more of the following information access categories: information retrieval; skills development, resource development; and/or equipment acquisition. Emphasis will be placed upon the following types of organizations or arrangements for developing these programs: community-based organizations (CBOs) or patient advocacy groups currently providing HIV/AIDS-related services to the affected community; public libraries serving communities in the provision of HIV/AIDS-related information and resources; health departments or other local, municipal, or state agencies working to improve public health; faith-based organizations currently providing HIV/AIDS-related services; and/or multi-type consortia of the above-listed organizations that may be in existence or formed specifically for this project.

The NLM primary point of contact for the solicitation is Greg Benedict, Contract Specialist, and the secondary point of contact is Shari Shor, Contracting Officer.

Two NLM Exhibitions Win 2015 Communicator Awards!

Two National Library of Medicine online exhibitions have been honored with 2015 Communicator Awards from the Academy of Interactive & Visual Arts (AIVA), a select group of professionals from leading international creative, advertising, and communications firms. Celebrating outstanding achievement in media and marketing, AVIA Communicator Awards are given yearly to recognize impactful and innovative websites, videos, multimedia, apps, and print ads.

In the category for government websites, From DNA to Beer: Harnessing Nature in Medicine and Industry received the Award of Excellence, the highest accolade, while Pictures of Nursing: The Zwerdling Collection earned the Award of Distinction. From DNA to Beer and Pictures of Nursing were designed by Link Studio, an interactive design and medical illustration company. Both sites bring topics in the history of medicine to life through custom animations developed by Link Studio, that allow visitors to interact with artifacts and delve deeper into the science behind the stories.

San Francisco General Hospital Library Receives NLM Grant to Reduce Health Disparities!

Congratulations to Stephen Kiyoi, Library Director at San Francisco General Hospital, who is a Principal Investigator on a newly awarded three-year, $300,000 NLM Information Resource Grant to Reduce Health Disparities (G08) from the National Library of Medicine. The project, Patient Engagement with Personal Health Records, will support the research and development of better ways to engage safety net patients with personal health records.

Partnering on the grant are Courtney Lyles, PhD, and Urmimala Sarkar, MD, MPH, from the UCSF Center for Vulnerable Populations (CVP). The CVP is an internationally recognized leader in health communication and health policy to reduce health disparities, with special expertise in the social determinants of health. The team will also partner with Yemila Alvarez, Community Outreach Manager at the San Francisco Public Library (SFPL). SFPL will help disseminate and scale project interventions across its 27 branch locations.

NLM’s Reznick Honored by the Archivists and Librarians in the History of the Health Sciences (ALHHS)

On April 30 the professional association Archivists and Librarians in the History of the Health Sciences (ALHHS) awarded NLM’s History of Medicine Division Chief, Jeffrey S. Reznick, PhD, with the 2015 ALHHS best article award for “Embracing the Future as Stewards of the Past: Charting a Course Forward for Historical Medical Libraries and Archives,” which appeared in the RBM: A Journal of Rare Books, Manuscripts, and Cultural Heritage (fall 2014 volume 15, number 2). Co-edited by Dr. Reznick and Michelle DiMeo, PhD, Curator of Digital Collections at the Chemical Heritage Foundation, this special issue contains the proceedings of the December 2013 symposium Emerging Roles for Historical Medical Libraries: Value in the Digital Age. Contributors to the issue include Nancy Cervetti, Simon Chaplin, Michelle DiMeo, Jacalyn Duffin, Mary Fissell, Christopher Lyons, and Jeffrey Reznick.

Dr. DiMeo also received the 2015 ALHHS best online resource award for her editorship of the special issue, which included negotiating open access rights with RBM’s editor and its publisher, the Association of College and Research Libraries, a division of the American Library Association. In conferring the award, the ALHHS recognized Dr. DiMeo for her leadership in organizing the associated symposium, which was sponsored in part by a Library Project Award from the National Network of Libraries of Medicine, Middle Atlantic Region (NN/LM MAR). The event offered a rare opportunity for library professionals and researchers to discuss collectively the challenges and opportunities presented by the digital age, and to articulate the pedagogical, intellectual and public outreach potentials offered by physical library spaces and material texts. On Thursday, July 30, at 9:00 AM PDT, Dr. DiMeo will present an NN/LM MAR-sponsored webinar about the symposium, including an overview of the project, outcomes, and lessons learned. Details will be announced soon through the NN/LM MAR’s Lunch with the Regional Medical Libraries (RML) Schedule.

Funding Announcement: NLM Administrative Supplements for Informationist Services in NIH-funded Research Projects!

The National Library of Medicine (NLM) and other participating NIH Institutes and Centers solicit applications for administrative supplements to eligible NIH awardees with active R01 grants and, depending on each participating Institute or Center’s preferences, with active P01, P20, P30, P50, R21, R34, U01, U19, U24, UM1 and U54 grants. The purposes of this administrative supplement program are (1) to enhance collaborative, multi-disciplinary basic and clinical research by integrating an information specialist into the research team in order to improve the capture, storage, organization, management, integration, presentation and dissemination of biomedical research data; and (2) to assess and document the value and impact of the informationist’s participation.

The Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA) encourages eligible NIH awardees as described above, who are interested in integrating an informationist into their research teams for the above-stated purposes to begin to consider applying for this new FOA. Interested eligible awardees are encouraged to begin seeking collaborative arrangements with informationists at their institutions or another institution as appropriate. Informationists are information specialists, usually health sciences librarians, who have graduate training and practical experience that provides them with disciplinary background in biomedical, behavioral or biological sciences and in library and information sciences/informatics. Their cross training provides informationists with a unique perspective on the acquisition, synthesis, management and use of information in research. Informationists work as team members with research scientists and health professionals, and are sometimes called in-context or ‘embedded’ information specialists.

Applications must be submitted electronically by July 17, 2015. Approximately five administrative supplement awards are anticipated in FY 2015. Total direct costs requested for the supplement may not exceed $25,000 per year. The project period is limited to two years. The earliest funding start date is September, 2015. Previously, eleven awards were made in 2014, and eight awards were made in 2012. For questions, contact Dr. Alan VanBiervliet at NLM.

NLM and FDA Launch Public Access to Global Unique Device Identification Database

The FDA, in partnership with the National Library of Medicine, has announced that data submitted to FDA’s Global Unique Device Identification Database (GUDID) is now publicly available through a website called AccessGUDID. By using AccessGUDID, anyone can search or download information that device labelers have submitted to the GUDID about their medical devices. Because the UDI system is being phased in over the next several years, labelers are currently submitting data on only the highest risk medical devices, a small subset of marketed devices. But as the system is implemented according to the UDI compliance timeline, the records of all medical devices required to have a UDI will be included.

With the launch of this beta version of AccessGUDID, everyone is encouraged—health care systems, clinicians, patients, researchers, industry and others—to explore its contents, assess its functionality and provide feedback. This feedback will shape future enhancements, including advanced search and web services. To submit feedback, use the Contact Us link at the bottom of the AccessGUDID landing page or the FDA UDI Help Desk.